Senator Joe Griffo, of the 47th Senate District is taking a stance against a proposed law which could affect many local golf courses.
On Tuesday, Griffo was backed by many local golf course owners denouncing new legislation titled “S4420”. This new piece of legislation, currently in committee, would allow local taxing jurisdictions such as counties and municipalities to assess privately and family owned golf courses based on the property’s, “highest and best use rather than its current use,” said Griffo, Tuesday at Twin Ponds Golf & Country Club.
The Senator also if this bill passes, it could allow government to turn courses into potential residential areas, based on what local governments believe is most suitable for any area golf course.
"And it is not just one level of government, it is every taxing jurisdiction,” said Griffo. “So even if the county may think that this isn't a wise move, a town or village could say differently.”
This leaves many golf course owners at wit’s end.
“We are taxed, we are depressed and I think that we are already taxed too high,” said Gene Carcone, Owner of Stonebridge Golf & Country Club.
Oneida County also taking a stance against this action, saying it will be a killer to many small businesses.
"These courses, these businesses, generate millions not thousands millions to our economy each and every year,” said Anthony Picente, Oneida County Executive. “This is not a hobby this is not something that can be taxed because it is recreational, it is the family business."
Leaving Central New York golf course owners furious with what the future holds.
"Sometimes I wonder what some of these legislatures stay up at night wondering how to run small business out of our state,” said Carcone. “And if we don't have these guys fighting for us we don't have a chance."